News & Analysis as of

Uncharted Territory: Seattle’s $15 Minimum Wage Ordinance

The City of Seattle’s Minimum Wage Ordinance is set to take effect April 1, 2015.  When it does, Seattle will have the highest minimum wage in the nation, outpacing larger metropolises like San Francisco and New York City....more

What’s Ahead in 2015 for Retailers in Labor and Employment Law? Part II

The recent Ogletree Deakins webinar, “What’s Ahead in 2015 for Retailers in Labor and Employment Law,” featured leaders in the retail industry and labor and employment attorneys—Randel K. Johnson, senior vice president of the...more

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow: What Employers Should Remember When Bad Weather Hits

In addition to bringing nearly two-feet of snow, Winter Storm Juno has also brought a gust of wage and hour issues for employers. Unfortunately, it is likely not the last time this winter that employers will have to consider...more

Trial Court Should Have Certified Class Claims Of Managerial Employees

Roberto Martinez and three other current or former employees of Joe’s Crab Shack (“JCS”) filed this putative class action asserting that they and similarly situated salaried managerial employees had been misclassified as...more

Winter Storm Juno Expected to Bring Lots of Snow, but Also Potential Wage and Hour Issues

So it’s going to snow a lot today and tomorrow. A lot. A potential blizzard. Some say this could be one of the biggest snowstorms ever to hit the East Coast. More than a foot of snow is expected in Manhattan, up to two...more

Working Two Jobs to Make Ends Meet: Paying Employees Working Exempt and Non-Exempt Jobs

Back in 2012, my colleague Bill Pokorny discussed how to properly pay a non-exempt employee who worked two jobs for an employer. This past week, one of my other colleagues and I were discussing a twist on this situation: what...more

Claims Handlers: It’s Time to Adjust Our Claims!

Many insurers have a longstanding practice of paying claims adjusters a set weekly salary, regardless of the number of hours they actually work. The practice has support in federal labor regulations; the regulations...more

Fair Warning: 10 Common Mistakes to Avoid under the Fair Labor Standards Act

Most healthcare employers have probably heard of the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA") and most probably think it is pretty simple. Doesn't that law just deal with prohibiting child labor and paying overtime wages to hourly...more

Feds Get Technical! Technical! (Sung to Olivia Newton John’s “Let’s Get Physical” of course)

We already know that California’s exempt/non-exempt classification scheme is a complicated system of checks and balances that takes most employers the help of an attorney to traverse. Well, just so we don’t get overly...more

Captain Obvious Issues Most Obvious FLSA Decision of 2014 (So Far...)

If you have been anywhere near a TV or radio over the past few months, you have probably seen or heard the ads for Hotels.com featuring Captain Obvious. If you’re from the Midwest, and Indiana in particular, it has probably...more

California Supreme Court: Newspaper Carriers Can Proceed With Class Action Challenging Independent Contractor Status

On June 30, 2014, the California Supreme Court issued a decision addressing how trial courts should determine the appropriateness of class certification in cases where workers claim they were improperly classified as...more

California Minimum Wage Increases July 1st!

Any California employer that has been in hiding the last six months or more may not be aware that California’s minimum wage increases to $9 per hour from the existing minimum wage of $8 per hour on July 1, 2014. In addition...more

Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Trade Group Challenge To Mortgage Loan Officer Compensation Guidance

On June 16, the U.S. Supreme Court consolidated and agreed to hear two related cases regarding the Department of Labor’s (DOL) 2010 interpretation of its regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act that mortgage loan...more

New Department of Labor Rule to Limit Live-In Employees Eligible for Exempt Status

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) has long provided an exemption for overtime wages to employees engaged in "companionship services," such as in-home caretakers who sleep at their patients' homes. Recently, however, the...more

Fenwick Employment Brief - June 2014

No Liability for Off-the-Clock Work Absent Employer Knowledge - A California appeals court refused to hold Kaiser Foundation Health Plan liable for alleged off-the-clock overtime about which it lacked knowledge. In...more

Statistical Sampling in Class Action Trial Violated Defendant's Due Process Rights

In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court on May 29 reversed a class action verdict for a class which was based on a flawed statistical model to determine liability and damages. Duran v. U.S. Bank National...more

Essential Employment Policies for Family Businesses, Part II

In this second round of “must-have” employment policies, we focus on rest breaks and meal periods. It can be devastating for any business, but especially a family-run business, to face claims of non-compliance with wage and...more

What’s Happening with Overtime?

Some misconceptions are floating around regarding the current status of federal overtime laws. .Fact: Nothing has actually changed yet. .Fact: President Obama has ordered the Department of Labor (DOL) to evaluate...more

President Obama Orders the Department of Labor to Modernize Overtime Rules

In a White House ceremony on Thursday, March 13, 2014, President Barack Obama signed a memorandum ordering the Secretary of Labor to “propose revisions to modernize and streamline the existing overtime regulations” governing...more

Obama Directs Initiative to Update FLSA Overtime Regulations Likely to Tighten White-Collar Classifications

President Barack Obama on Thursday signed a Presidential Memorandum directing the Secretary of Labor to update the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulations governing which "white collar" employees qualify for overtime...more

Labor and Employment: President Obama Directs Department of Labor to Modernize and Streamline FLSA Overtime Regulations

On March 13, 2014, President Obama issued a memorandum directing the Secretary of Labor to update and streamline the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime regulations. In the memorandum, President Obama noted that the...more

President Obama Directs the DOL to Attack FLSA Exemptions

Everybody is talking about it – President Obama’s announcement at the end of last week that existing overtime regulations be “modernized” and “streamlined” – but what exactly does this mean? The answer is, only time will...more

Fenwick Employment Brief - February 2014

A California federal court in Enki Corporation v. Freedman held that a former employee’s access of the employer’s computer systems through his log-in credentials did not amount to unlawful hacking under either the Computer...more

Preventing A Messy "Failed Exemption" Lawsuit

(Labor Letter, February 2014) - In recent years employers have become all too familiar with lawsuits alleging violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). According to the Administrative Office of the...more

Employee Pay on a Snow Day

With the Eastern half of the United States bracing for heavy snow and freezing temperatures this week, many employers will close businesses due to icy and snowy road conditions. Employers must be mindful, however, that a snow...more

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